What’s replacing fireworks in SLC for Independence Day and Pioneer Day celebrations?

Last year featured laser shows. This July will showcase drone performances.

(Mark Hansen | The Salt Lake Tribune) Fireworks at the Fourth of July event at The Gateway in Salt Lake City on July 4, 2019. This year, the city will feature a drone show.

Salt Lake City celebrations for Independence Day and Pioneer Day will go off this year with less of a bang and more of a buzz.

City officials stated this week that drone shows will replace traditional fireworks displays for the two holidays as a way to combat fire danger and protect air quality.

“As temperatures rise and fire danger increases, we must be conscientious of both our air quality and the potential for wildfires,” Mayor Erin Mendenhall said in a news release. “The summer holiday shows are a mainstay for Salt Lakers, and we’re excited about adapting to new technology which will provide a safe alternative for our residents and visitors.”

The Independence Day drone show will be Saturday at Jordan Park. A Pioneer Day show will be July 24 at Liberty Park.

Both shows are scheduled to begin at 10 p.m. and last 10 to 15 minutes with a display of colorful lights on drones that are programmed to perform choreographed formations.

Shows will feature food trucks, live music and lawn seating. Jordan Park’s main field will provide the best views for Saturday’s show.

The July 24 performance will cap a full day of celebration at Liberty Park, including the Days of ’47 Parade.

The hill near the pond on the southeast side of the park and the main east event area will provide the best viewing opportunities for the drone display.

Both drone shows will be free.

While these performances mark the first drone shows the city has used to celebrate the July holidays, it is not the first time fireworks have been replaced. Last year, laser shows were used to celebrate Independence Day and Pioneer Day.